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Think Simple: How Smart Leaders Defeat Complexity. Ken Segall’s new book

Think Simple. Simplicity is arguably the most potent weapon in business—attracting customers, motivating employees, helping outthink competitors, and creating new efficiencies. Yet rarely is it as simple as it looks.       Ken Segall’s first book, Insanely Simple, was based on observations gained from twelve years working as Steve Jobs’s advertising agency creative director, first with NeXT and then with Apple. He saw firsthand that Jobs looked at everything through the lens of simplicity. His obsession with simplicity was not just visible in Apple’s products. You could see it in the way the company organized, innovated, advertised, sold at retail, and provided customer service. In practice, simplicity was Jobs’s most powerful business weapon. It helped Apple distinguish its products and create entirely new product categories, and it put distance between Apple and its competitors. But, while Apple is a terrific example of a company that has been propelled by the power of simplicity, it is hardly alone. Inspired by the ways Apple has benefited from the power of simplicity, Ken Segall set out to find other companies that were traveling this path. He wanted to learn more about the thinking of their leaders. He felt that if he could…
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Irene Villa: “There Is No Peace Without Forgiveness”

Irene Villa lost her legs in a terror attack. A psychologist, writer and competitive athlete, she advocates faith, facing it and forgiveness   Irene Villa has a magnetic personality. She survived a terrorist attack by the ETA group in Madrid in which she lost both legs, but she won the “affection and love” of many people who follow her, who read her writings and who are encouraged by her testimony. In an interview with Aleteia, Irene tells why she forgives, and how she advocates for a more humane world.     You are a psychologist, a writer and a journalist. Do you think people empathize with you? It is important to have passed through certain things in order for other people who are in the same struggle to believe you, hear you and say, “Well it’s true; if she can do it, why can’t I?” For me, the people who came to see me when I had my amputations were essential. It’s true that at times the only way to help certain people is to have passed through it yourself, and to have overcome it. Many people said to me, “Don’t worry; someday you will learn to walk again,” and…
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ROCKvolución: Rock ’n’ Roll B-School

A business professor in Spain wants to rock you. In a recent session for MBA alumni, Salvador López, marketing lecturer at ESADE Business School and author of the Spanish-language book ROCKvolución empresarial (Urano, June 2012), turned jam sessions into business lessons. He had students view film of live concerts and interviews with musicians (some of which he conducted for his radio show) to analyze, among other things, their use of technology, ability to form alliances with clients, whom they call fans, and outside- the-box thinking. With students, he discusses the history of Genesis and the finer points of the Beatles, U2, and Coldplay.   Now working on his first solo album, López wants aspiring executives to learn management techniques from rock ’n’ rollers, ROCKvolución. He’ll do anything to convey his passion for music and the lessons it teaches, even lead a crowd in Queen’s We Will Rock You. In fact, he is designing an entire executive education program on management and music. Recently, López waxed philosophical about the power music has to move people and shared some of the takeaways rock legends have offered on the world of business. Here are excerpts from the conversation:   What makes, ROCKvolución, rock ’n’…
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Deepak Chopra, The spiritual leader of the pack

The spiritual leader of the pack: While everybody is given potential in life, the issue of how to best maximize that potential and reach new levels of achievement is a problem that most people grapple with, and which few of us solve. Furthermore, having an innovative mindset is paramount to surviving and thriving in an ever-changing economic landscape, no less so for Chinese elites.   Luckily this summer, in an event organized by the California Personal Evolution Center (CPEC), the Institute of Psychology at Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Shanghai American Chamber of Commerce, Dr Deepak Chopra, the spiritual leader, named one of Time Magazine′s "100 Most Influential People of the Year" in 1999, will hold his first leadership forum in China. He will be the first speaker in the series of events called, "The World is Within You," and will be in Shanghai and Beijing, on August 11 and 14, respectively. Fusing spiritual wisdom, spiritual leader, management consulting expertise, and lessons from his best-selling book The Soul of Leadership, Dr Chopra will bring audiences a whole new perspective on leadership and success. Published in 2010, The Soul of Leadership has been hailed by the Wall Street Journal as one…
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Tim Berners-Lee believes web access is a human right

Tim Berners-Lee, the man attributed to the creation of the internet, gave a speech at an MIT symposium and shared his two decades worth of internet knowledge with the crowd. He spoke about a wide variety of issues, from net neutrality, which he is supportive of, to mobile web access.   Berners-Lee’s words concerning web access raised a couple of eyebrows, and definitely raised the interest of this writer. “Access to the Web is now a human right” he continues, “It’s possible to live without the Web. It’s not possible to live without water. But if you’ve got water, then the difference between somebody who is connected to the Web and is part of the information society, and someone who (is not) is growing bigger and bigger.”     Berners-Lee’s quote certainly adds an interesting thought to how we perceive the world wide web. Has the web manifested to such a point that we believe it to be a need in our society? This led me to think of my life, and where I would be without access to the internet. It was a pretty scary exercise. His quote also brings to mind the net neutrality debate. It strikes to…
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Martin Lindstrom, How to build an unforgettable logo

No, you don′t have to tell me, because I know what you′re about to say: your new product is brilliant. It′s a game-changer. Problem is, you need a killer logo, an unforgettable logo. Well, today, designers, inventors, and investors are facing a dilemma similar to the one that writers and artists have struggled with for decades: there′s nothing left. Or here′s another problem: if you do manage to create a jaw-droppingly clever or memorable image, rather than engendering widespread consumer recall of your brand, your Easter-blue palette risks looking uneasily similar to the Tiffany box, and your little black bull is a transparent rip-off of the one that dangles from the neck of Sangre de Toro red wine.   As far as the logo is concerned, to paraphrase Bill Maher, it′s time for New Rules. Today, what counts far more than a puma, a monkey, or a snarling aardvark is the cross-sensory experience your brand offers. I′m talking not only the emotion, beliefs, and desires your brand evokes, but its feel, touch, sound, smell and personality, of which the logo is just one small part. Whether it′s a soda can, a car, a doll, a fragrance, a smartphone, or laptop,…
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Baroness Susan Greenfield, ″Perception of science still needs a lot of work″

New Delhi: Baroness Susan Greenfield, a member of Great Britain’s House of Lords and a neuroscientist at Oxford University, is about as controversial as scientists can get. As head of the UK’s Royal Institution, the world’s oldest independent research body, she did much to boost science communication as well as slap sexism charges on the institution when it ousted her. She spoke in an interview about her controversial opinion on the potentially deleterious effects of social networking sites on teenagers’ brains, sexism in science, as well as her forthcoming dystopian novel, 2121 .   You’re known for your controversial views on how prolonged exposure to Facebook and computer games could be changing teenagers’ brains? Is this good or bad for science? Well, if you’re a neuroscientist you take it as a given that the brain will change because we know that the brain is really sensitive to the environment and that is why we are so successful as a species. We don’t run fast, don’t see particularly well, and are not as strong compared to others, but what we do fantastically is adapt to our environment. The big question is how we will adapt and whether that will be good…
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EU can lead world on third industrial revolution, says Rifkin

The EU is better positioned than any other region in the world to build a seamless energy, transport and communication grid that will create a "lateral", continental market for one billion people, said Jeremy Rifkin in an exclusive interview with EurActiv.  Rifkin, an American economist and well-known author of the acclaimed book ′The European Dream′, believes the world has reached the end game of a second industrial revolution. The global economic recovery is driving up oil and food prices, sparking social unrest.     The world has reached peak oil in terms of pro-capita reserves. The system will collapse once more when oil prices will rise to $140 or $150 a barrel again, Rifkin said. According to the economist, this end game has set in motion a third industrial revolution, which will be based on continental energy infrastructure and governance. Boosting renewables, transforming every building into a power plant, developing hydrogen storage capacity, adapting Internet and communication technologies and developing plug-in transport are the five infrastructure pillars of Rifkin′s third industrial revolution. "It′s like Wi-Fi: each city and region becomes a node that connects with all the other nodes, sharing a collaborative power grid," he said. "You know the saying…
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Weitzman and Stern named Leontief Prize winners

Tufts′ Global Development and Environment (GDAE) Institute on Nov. 10 announced Martin Weitzman of Harvard University and Nicholas Stern of the London School of Economics as the 2011 winners of its annual Leontief Prize for Advancing the Frontiers of Economic Thought. The prize recognizes their research contributions in climate change economics, a field that focuses on the economic feasibility of reducing greenhouse gases. "With the impetus provided by Stern and Weitzman′s work, climate issues may now have a much greater role in our analysis of economic development," GDAE Senior Research Associate Jonathan Harris said.     Stern, who is chair of the Grantham Institute for Climate Change and the Environment at the London School of Economics, formerly served as chief economist and senior vice president of the World Bank. He will be largely recognized for the Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change, a 700−page report he authored for the British government, in which he outlined more robust efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Because of this, he won the Leontief Prize. The report, Harris said, offered a revolutionary response to economists who typically balance the costs and benefits of reducing carbon emissions. "Until recently, most economists recommended relatively…
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Raghuram Rajan business book of the Year 2010

Raghuram Rajan, one of the few economists to see the financial crisis coming, wins the Financial Times and Goldman Sachs business book of the Year award. Raghuram Rajan collected the £30,000 prize for Fault Lines in New York on Wednesday. The book identifies the flaws that helped cripple the world financial system, prescribes potential remedies, but also warns that unless policymakers push through painful reforms, the world could be plunged into renewed turmoil.   Lionel Barber, FT editor and chair of the judging panel, praised Fault Lines as a “serious and sober business book” for a time when “sobriety is a virtue”. The title, published by Princeton University Press, saw off stiff competition from five others on the shortlist, to be chosen as “the most compelling and enjoyable” business book of 2010. The final intense debate among the seven judges came down to a choice between Fault Lines and Too Big to Fail, Andrew Ross Sorkin’s acclaimed minute-by-minute analysis of the collapse of Lehman Brothers. Prof Rajan was the International Monetary Fund’s chief economist when he warned the 2005 Jackson Hole conference of central bankers that the seeds of disaster were being sown in the financial sector. His presentation jarred with…